Appleton's Cyclopedia of American Biography, edited by James
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GUEST, John, naval officer, born in Missouri in 1821; died in Portsmouth, New Hampshire, 12 January, 1879. He entered the navy as a midshipman in 1837, and in 1843 became passed midshipman, and was attached to the steamer "Poinsett" in the survey of Tampa bay in 1844-'5. In 1850 he was made lieutenant, and in 1866 captain. He served in 1845-'8 on the frigate "Congress" in the Pacific, on the coast, of Mexico during the Mexican war, and took part on shore in several sharp engagements. In 1854 he was second in command of the seamen and marines of the United States steamer "39 Plymouth," boarded at Shanghai a Chinese man-of-war and liberated a pilot-boat crew, and was also in a severe and victorious fight with the Chinese rebels, who endeavored to plunder the foreign residents of the city in April of the same year. He was in command of the boats of the "Niagara," and cut out the Confederate steamer "Aid," under the guns of Fort Morgan, in August, 1861. Captain Guest commanded the "Owasco," of Admiral Porter's mortar flotilla, in the bombardment and passage of Fort Jackson and Fort St. Philip, and commanded the same vessel at the bombardment of Vicksburg in the summer of the same year, receiving the highest praise from his superiors. He commanded the iron-clad "Lehigh" and the steamer "Itasca" at both of the Fort Fisher engagements. He was promoted to commodore in 1873, and at the time of his death was commandant of the Portsmouth navy yard.
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